London Wetlands

Route: London Wetland Centre

Area: London

Date of walk: 29th August 2018

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 3.0 miles

Weather: Bright

London Wetland Centre is managed by the World Wildlife Trust (WWT) and is a 100 acre urban oasis for wildlife consisting of lakes, ponds and gardens. Despite its location in central London, the wetlands are home to an incredible array of wildlife – the list of bird sightings for August alone includes such species as Shelduck, Green Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Black-tailed Godwit, Redshank, Snipe, Common Tern, Garganey, Marsh Harrier, Peregrine, Buzzard, Hobby, Little Egret, Whinchat, Yellow Wagtail, Pied Flycatcher and Wheatear. In addition there are numerous varieties of dragonflies and other insects, as well as lizards, grass snakes and slow worms

This great urban conservation project was the vision of Sir Peter Scott, the founder of WWT. In 1989 four redundant reservoirs stood where the Wetland Centre is now and work began after planning permission was granted in 1995. More than 300,000 water plants and 27,000 trees were planted, paths were built, lakes and ponds were formed, and reptiles from brownfield sites that were scheduled for development were rescued and brought here

Today would be our first visit to this inspiring place. We caught the London Underground to Putney Bridge and walked along the Thames Path before entering the Wetland Centre. We wandered around the ponds and lagoons and spent a short amount of time in a couple of the hides before making a diversion to watch the otters being fed – a wonderful sight

There’s enough interest for a full day’s visit but we only had limited time to spare today, so barely scraped the surface. It was a wonderful visit though and I hope we can return for a proper exploration

I’ve not included a route on the map as it’s best to wander around this place as your fancy takes you – a layout plan showing the paths and points of interest is given out at the entrance to the Centre

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